Keeping your project sponsor informed about the progress of the project is incredibly important to the overall success of the work.
After all, your project sponsor is likely the project customer, and has control over budgets and resources! Meetings are a great way to update the sponsor and get their feedback on any issues or upcoming decisions.
Very good sponsors are really busy so you need to plan ahead to get more results from your meetings.
Get More Results from Your Project Sponsor Meetings
Here is a sample agenda that you can use for your next Project Sponsor meeting:
- Review and agree on the agenda
- Update on progress and agreed goals
- Review, discuss and resolve any open risks, issues, or change requests
- Review pending decisions
- Other feedback
- AOB (Any Other Business)
- Summarize the meeting outcomes.
Try these tips to make the most of this agenda outline.
1. Review and agree on the agenda
The sponsor might not be thinking about your project as you meet so it is a good idea to get an alignment as you start the meeting. Agree on the desired meeting outcome. Explain to the sponsor what it is you wish to achieve and ask what they want to get from the meeting.
2. Update on progress to agreed goals
The sponsor will want to know where you are with the project – even if only at a high level- before they relax into helping you with the project’s success.
Ideally use pre-agreed dashboards with the schedule, KPIs, status reports, etc. when giving this update. This will give the sponsor confidence in your management ability and save time. It will also allow the project sponsor to self-report, stay connected, and involved between meetings.
3. Review, discuss and resolve any open risks, issues, or change requests
Acknowledge, understand, and deal with any obstacles to project success. Typically, these are expressed as risks, issues, and change requests. These obstacles may also change the project outcomes, so the sponsor needs to know.
4. Review pending decisions
It can help to talk the project sponsor through any major decisions you are about to make and get inputs to save time later on.
5. Other feedback
It is always good to ask the sponsor for other input, advice, or feedback. This also shows that you are open to feedback, which is important.
At this stage of the meeting, cover any small points or items that need attention but should not take up the entire meeting. Keep the front part of the meeting free for the more important items.
7. Summarize the meeting outcomes.
Recap the meeting in terms of decisions, outcomes or action items or all of the above.
Follow our agenda at your next Project Sponsor meeting to maximize the time and get more results for your project.
Editor’s Note: This article is an excerpt from our free book, Collaborative Project Management: A Handbook.